Rewriting is the art of shifting your focus from the words you love to the story that inspired you in the first place.
I keep asking myself if these words are conveying the story I'm trying to tell. At first I needed a profound sense of ruthlessness in order to cut those beloved words, but repetition made the process easier.
The question for me now isn't "Do I love it?" or even "Is it well written?" For me the question is "Does my reader need that word or phrase or will their experience be the same or better without that bit of verbiage.
At the suggestion of an editor interested in my latest submission, I'm currently turning one book into two.
It's all about the rewrite.
Here are a couple of thoughts on the subject from two authors you will recognize.
“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” — Mark Twain
“By the time I am nearing the end of a story, the first part will have been reread and altered and corrected at least one hundred and fifty times. I am suspicious of both facility and speed. Good writing is essentially rewriting. I am positive of this.” — Roald Dahl